There are a number of benefits that come with printing with ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) material. For instance, it generally comes with good abrasion and heat resistance, and also enables a number of finishing processes that wouldn’t quite work as well with other types of thermoplastic. But, there are also some glaring issues when it comes to the utilization of ABS filaments, particularly in regard to the odor and high fume emissions, a characteristic that is potentially harmful towards our surrounding environment. But, the Los Angeles-based 3D printing filament producer 3D Printlife seems to have an adequate solution in their ENVIRO Eco-Friendly ABS.
The ENVIRO ABS, which was released in late 2015, is specially formulated to be consumed by bacteria once it enters a landfill or commercial compost. On top of that, 3D Printlife also donates $1 from every spool of filament they sell to plant a tree. Now, the filament producer is partnering up with the Taiwanese company XYZprinting, owned by their parent company New Kinpo Group, and will feature their ENVIRO ABS filament with the latest XYZprinting da Vinci 3D printer products.
Now, with every purchased da Vinci 1.0 Pro and da Vinci 1.0 Pro 3-in-1 purchased directly on the XYZprinting website, customers will receive a complementary spool of ENVIRO filament. The 3-in-1 is their newer, more all-encompassing da Vinci 1.0 Pro model, equipped with a laser engraver and a high-resolution scanner. Both 3D printer models are compatible with both PLA and ABS, and have a print volume of around 200 x 200 x 190 mm. XYZprinting has been one of the emerging global desktop 3D printer manufacturers, and is an ideal suitor to help 3D Printlife expand their environmentally friendly ABS filament throughout the 3D printing market.
“We are absolutely thrilled to partner with XYZprinting,” said 3D Printlife Co-Founder Buzz Baldwin. “Both companies are extremely optimistic about the long-term environmental benefits created by this collaboration. In extensive independent testing the da Vinci 1.0 Pro outperformed many printers that typically sell for much more. This partnership serves the environment while still providing the highest quality 3D printing hardware and consumables.”
In order to ensure that the ABS filament was fully compatible with the da Vinci 3D printers, researchers from the Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) thoroughly tested the ENVIRO ABS on a da Vinci 1.0 Pro, looking to optimize the print temperatures and settings for each of the 13 different filament colors. According to Martin Gallagher, the head of the Digital Scholarship Lab at FIT, 400 hours of testing proved that the filament was extremely consistent and capable of high- quality prints, and also showed no signs of jamming and print failures.
Although there is still a lack of environmentally-conscious companies in the 3D printer and filament markets, 3D Printlife is providing a much-needed product to an industry that is still trying to sort out its impact on the environment. At the end of the day, if 3D printing technology can manage to become the go-to sustainable tool for both manufacturing and the environment, it will almost certainly have a great impact on our lives and our planet.